Going into 2019, there was a lot of talk about what the year would bring, particularly for Gen Z, today’s youngest working population. With more than 70 million of these students seeking employment over the summer, and another 220 million still enrolled in higher education, Gen Z continues outpacing its predecessors in size and scope.
Running parallel to these developments, 2019 brought about trade tensions between the world’s superpowers, a slowdown in economic growth, and a growing air of uncertainty. Now, well into the fourth quarter, it’s as good a time as any to start reflecting on what took place — and how this is impacting the Gen Z worker.
A 2019 Overview
When it comes time to write the history of 2019, the books will likely point to unrest around the globe, and without rehashing everything that happened, let’s consider a few pertinent highlights:
U.S. President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping planned and implemented increased tariffs against one another’s country, causing the markets to fluctuate wildly. Japan enacted similar restrictions against South Korea, in response to a court ruling. While the UK danced around a decision, France mulled over the possible employment outcomes of a Brexit deal or no deal. Elsewhere in Europe, Italy saw its public debts rise by 135 percent, while the German economy contracted, due to decreasing demand for the country’s chief exports. Red lights flashing, the Financial Times, covering bank job cuts near 30,000 between April and August, cited failing interest rates, weak trading volumes, and moves toward automation as the main culprits.
The response to these and other key headlines has sounded an almost immediate call for alarm, Put mildly, 2019 showed signs of political strain and recession at every turn, particularly in the 12 largest economies.
What Gen Z Thinks About Their Career Prospects
Having only recently started to enter into the job market, Gen Z approaches the start of their careers with a fresh perspective, free from professional fatigue or personal baggage. That said, they’re not exempt from outside influence and have grown up under their own set of unique experiences. In conducting this year’s World’s Most Attractive Employer survey research, Universum engaged 247,235 business and engineering/IT students to uncover the brands and employment attributes most desired in 2019. Unsurprisingly, the challenges facing the economies mentioned above appeared consistently throughout the results. Read more here…